Far from the flashy softcore pornography of Mad Men or Boardwalk Empire or the tongue that fails to hit the cheek cartoonishness of 30 Rock or Girls, Everybody Loves Raymond is a keening, gurgling representation of what it’s like to live surrounded by the wreckage of capitalism. Nothing ever happens. No one ever changes. Everyone is always fighting over nothing. There are no stakes; how could there be any? What would they be? I’ve watched about three quarters of two episodes and I never want to watch any more. Because it’s too real.
And that’s why the fact that it comes from Netflix is such a big deal. Watching House of Cards is great for the content, but because of the delivery method. This is the first truly great television show in history not to require a cable subscription. Not only that, but the show is available instantly, on your time, wherever/whenever. That’s the shot heard ‘round the world. It’s Netflix not only taking on the networks, but taking on the cable companies. It’s disrupting an entire industry.
The war has started for the future of television and Netflix, not directly, is fighting the good fight. If we, the consumers, can purchase the rights to watch the best shows directly, why we would pay a middle-man (cable companies) to do the same thing for us, for a more expensive? That’s the vision of the future that Netflix is presenting and House of Cards verifies its legitimacy …
“The goal is to become HBO faster than HBO can become us” was the big quote from Netflix chief content officer Ted Sarandos from an in-depth feature on the company in GQ.